I have come to realize that others can see things in me that i cannot yet see within myself. Be it strength or courage or even a girly side that I never knew was really there. This is where my dear friend Mariah comes in. Have you heard of Mariah? Did you know she is Unstoppable? I know I have written about her on my blog before, I first met her a few months ago at a PriorFatGirl event. She was sharing the story of how she found her way into becoming a triathlete. Mariah is an incredible woman. A Mother, a friend, a motivator. She is strong, confident, smart, funny, and AMAZING. A few months ago Mariah was all set to have an awesome active weekend doing her thing at a Tri called Trek. Just before she was set to leave for Trek a setback occurred. She was injured and unable to compete! You can go back and read her blog a bit and see some photos of the injury etc. It is quite a read, in fact her whole blog is quite a read!
She has had a long slow recovery from her injury, but she is a fighter. She also is an encourager! She can look at you, and see things in you that you can’t see in yourself. She has pulled me aside more than once now and told me I am destined for great things, and by great things she means Tri’s. That scares me! That is SO MUCH WORK! So to ease my fears, she invited me, and everyone else to come cheer at the next tri she did. That happened to be this past weekend! So Sunday our very own #Fat2FitPack member Mariah made her TRIumphant return to the triathlon circuit! I could not be prouder!
So off I went to Lake Nokomis in the early hours (okay, early for some, late for me I had finished work at 4:00am.) The sun was out, the grass was dewy under my sneakers as I made my way across the field and to the lake edge where the Tri would start.
I was pretty excited to look around as this Tri was put on by my gym… the YWCA of Minneapolis
I didn’t spend much time wandering around though, I wanted to find Mariah! We got to chat a bit before she had to get ready for her heat to start.
Mariah explained to me that women of all ages and shapes and sizes do the TRI, and she was right, I would later see a woman who was in her 60′s and I wouldn’t believe my eyes. How did I know she was in her 60′s? Because all participants get their age put on the back of their calves! YAY! An excuse to write on yourself!
Before we knew it Mariah’s heat was hitting the water and away they went swimming their hearts out! People were cheering, cowbells were ringing and the energy of the crowd was electric! It made me want to jump in the water for a swim for sure!!! We cheered as people came out of the water! We cheered for everyone, not just Mariah, and I laughed as I looked around and saw people I recognised from my gym, both volunteering and racing!
Once you swim, you are onto the ride of your life! All I can think of is how much my ass would hurt after a ride like that… but Mariah mounted up and away she rode!
When she got back, her husband, Paul (who I want to call Pauly for some reason, perhaps too many Pauly Shore movies) and her daughter Hannah and I, along with Corryn, Meredith, Ann and Jay nd I were SCREAMING her name and cheering for her. This was our chance to see in her what she sees in each of us. The determination the pure will the strength to be amazing. Mariah was truly being her Unstoppable self. She was in pain.
As we shouted and screamed to cheer her on, she made her way through the transition area and started the run.
As she got closer to us during the start of the 5k portion it seemed as though her endorphins were kicking in and her confidence started to grow a bit more. Maybe it was all the reminders we were yelling that she could do this!
We cheered for so many people, Ann really is amazing at motivating people during the race! I think perhaps it is because she has done so many races in her time. We moved toward the Finish Line, and started cheering from there. So many athletes it was amazing. The energy was just electric! Watching people complete the Tri was inspirational. Here comes Mariah approaching the finish line!
Our brave warrior finished the Tri! She fought through injury, and a shot recovery to finish this tri. She didn’t have enough time to train the way she wanted to for this tri, but you know what, She did it! Mariah you are Amazing! I followed her to the First Aid tent for some ice right after she crossed the finish line to get a comment.
Mariah do you have any comments for our readers out there in Blogland…
“It was so Amazing Kris, When everyone is cheering your name. You have to do this next year, you HAVE TO. I see a triathlete in you. You can SO do this.”
So this is the crew that everyone will be cheering on next year at the YWCA Tri? You never know Strange things can happen! Y-Tri? Y-Not?!
And remember kids… Mariah says it, because she believes in all of us…
(sign made by Ann)